Samsung Developer Conference: A New Beginning

Samsung Developer Conference: A New Beginning

Mihai Pohontu

Samsung’s premier software developer conference is right around the corner and I’m thrilled to share the news of what you can expect from this event. First, you should know that SDC is a singular event in the company’s constellation of public appearances. Samsung will regularly invest great effort into creating amazing displays at events such as Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and IFA in Berlin, as well as a series of smaller product-focused announcements throughout the year, but Samsung Developer Conference is unlike any other.

It is the only conference that brings together all business units within our company, regardless of their area of focus (mobile, wearables, TV, IoT, VR, chipsets or the next great innovation). This is truly a “One Samsung” event and the only one of its kind, nothing short of extraordinary. Furthermore, this by far the largest and the most prestigious event focused exclusively on Samsung’s business, rather than sharing the spotlight with many other brands. As such, we’re not pulling any stops in bringing together the very best technical and business leaders from across the company and we highlight the entire range of software-focused initiatives.

Even though the format of the conference is unique, this year’s edition represent a significant evolution in terms of visual design, content and attendance. We expect more than 5,000 participants at the conference this year, up from 3K in the previous edition. Also, we think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how the conference looks – the build-out is a work of magic, thanks to the magisterial work done by our architects to create a distinct, memorable look. But by far the most exciting aspect of the conference is the content. This year we have over 170 speakers, covering more than 100 individual sessions, more than triple the amount of the previous edition and only comparable with the largest developer conferences in the world.

The sessions are grouped into thematic sections: Business Opportunities, Enterprise, Games and Entertainment, Health and Medical, IoT, Mobile, Smart TV, Tizen, Wearables and last, but certainly not least, Virtual Reality. I personally cannot wait to learn more about Raising Capital for a Virtual Future with a panel of leading VC experts from Google Ventures, Castle Ventures, Rumble and UploadVR. I’m also keen on hearing more about the MilkVR service from Andrew Dickerson, one of the company’s VR pioneers and a leading visionary in the field. I’d love to increase my knowledge of the Tizen SDK by listening to Hong-Seok Kim, who is leading the respective lab in our Suwon R&D center, but the session I’m looking forward to the most is the one where we get to meet Samsung Developer Champions, an amazing group of volunteers that spread the word in the broader community about innovations and opportunities within the Samsung ecosystem.

I hope you will quickly identify a good roster of fascinating sessions, but before then, in the mornings of both days of the conference we’ve scheduled a number of keynotes from technology luminaries from both Samsung and other leading companies in Silicon Valley. The conference will be opened by Dongjin Koh, our President of the Mobile Communication Business and followed by Injong Rhee, who leads our Mobile R&D group in Suwon and will talk about the broad range of software service initiatives we’re working on. We will also hear from Emily Becher, who leads the Samsung Accelerator program, Curtis Sasaski, who will cover our IoT initiatives, and Sang Kim, who will talk about Smart TV. On the second day, I look forward to listening to John Riccitiello, CEO of Unity Technologies, talk about the future of VR, David Kenny, the GM of IBM Watson talk about artificial intelligence and panel of the best minds in tech moderated by our very own John Pleasants, EVP of Media Solutions Center America who will talk to Dianne Tavenner of Summit Public Schools, Genevieve Bell of Intel, Monique Morrow of Cisco and Maureen Fan of Baobab Studios. Great insights all-around!

Following the keynotes in the Main Hall, we’ve prepared a very special program focused on partnerships, which I consider to be one of the central themes at this year’s conferences. You truly will introduce the “Made for Samsung” program, which was custom-built to support ambitious software partnerships, designed to produce exclusive products for Samsung’s platforms. During these special sessions you’ll be able to learn from the experiences of CNN, Expedia, News Republic, Pear, Skimble, Lyft, The Weather Company, Vice and many others that have collaborated with Samsung to deliver incredible experiences for our customers.

Once you drink your full at the fountain of knowledge, please wander around the place to see the amazing booth displays we’ve assembled, have a bit of fun with the 4D interactive experiences, take in in the Partner Theater 20-minute presentations, chat with some of your favorite speakers or simply hang out in the lounge and listen to great tunes. Get your questions answered at our Ask Me Anything! sessions featuring industry luminaries like film director and VR Futurist, Brett Leonard, VRML co-creator, Tony Parisi and children’s app creator and lead guitarist from mega-band KISS, Tommy Thayer. Please know that our reputation for throwing some of the best parties in the tech world will remain unblemished. For this event, we’ve secured the extraordinary British electronica group Underworld, who opened the London Olympic Games and will undoubtedly deliver an unforgettable dance party in the evening of April 27th.

I hope to see all of you there, to learn, to grow, to make new friends, to find killer deals and to party like it’s 2016!